If you want to achieve success, you must be willing to learn from your mistakes, says self-made billionaire and star of CNBC's "Billion Dollar Buyer" Tilman Ferttita.
Fertitta is the owner and CEO of hospitality group Landry's, one of the largest restaurant corporations in the world, and owner of the Houston Rockets basketball team. According to Forbes, his estimated net worth is $3.6 billion.
In this week's episode, Fertitta meets with Richard and Kate Hanley, the founders of a Louisiana-based salad dressing startup called Hanley's.
The company is known for its all-natural ingredients and unique flavors like "creole ranch," "sweet creole mustard" and a signature "sensation" dressing."
"We make everything from scratch," Richard tells Fertitta. "Big large companies don't make dressings like that anymore. They use prepared products. They use the cheapest soils."
Last year, the company only netted about $3,000 and the founders paid themselves just $10,000 for the whole year. "To say that we've struggled is an understatement," says Richard.
With Fertitta's help, he hopes to become Landry's go-to salad dressing company. However, Fertitta thinks this goal is too "lofty." He currently buys about 120,000 gallons of salad dressing a year and Hanley's only produces 12,000 a year.
The self-made billionaire advises that they go about their business goal a different way: Show him a few of their salad dressings and prove to him that customers will like it. He invites them to his Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in Lake Charles so his chefs can sample a few of the dressings.
The two founders bring three dressings: a blue cheese that's "a little watery," a ranch that Fertitta says tastes like mayonnaise and their signature sensation dressing, which the chefs enjoy.
Richard admits that he's shocked over the ranch dressing's poor reviews but isn't ready to give up so easily.
"I would like a second opportunity to prove to you a true buttermilk ranch," he tells Fertitta. "We want to be the best. We'll make the best."
Fertitta suggests that they tweak their recipe and come back to him with a new version. After working over 100 hours to perfect their buttermilk ranch dressing, and confident that Fertitta will be a fan, they meet with the Golden Nugget's crew for round two.
"I do think Tilman is going to be impressed with our new dressings," says Richard. The billionaire isn't.
This time around, the ranch tastes too acidic because of the extra buttermilk and the garlic they incorporated is overpowering. "You have totally missed it," says the billionaire.
Though he passes on buying Hanley's ranch dressing, Fertitta says that he is impressed by their ability to take the advice that was given and try again. "I love that you said, 'You know what, we don't think it's right and we're going to go back and fix it and make it better,'" the billionaire tells them.
"Your willingness to admit when you're wrong and your willingness to learn," he continues, "that's the greatest asset an entrepreneur can have."
Video Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=glCenHX5yNo